Can I make waffles and freeze them for 6am toasting?
What will entertain me when I have no more New York Times Monday crossword puzzles left to do on my iPhone App?
Should I get one more tattoo or would that make me too much like the Circus Lady?
Will I get my quilting mojo back or is it over for me?
Why is my hair still falling out a full year after I stopped nursing?
Speaking of nursing: is it weird that I still dream of nursing my toddler almost every night?
Should I save the multitude of clothing items in my closet that don’t fit me or give them away?
Will my children suffer irreparable emotional damage if they get socks for one of the nights of Hanukkah this year?
How, exactly, will I get through the long cold New York winter without losing my mind?
Who will take care of my kids if I lose my mind?
Who will take care of my kids if I get the dreaded stomach virus?
Will I have enough blog-design clients to make my business work?
Which recipe for ‘breakfast bars’ would be most likely to please my husband?
Do you have any questions currently plaguing you? Please tell me so I don’t feel like such a freak.
Every Mother’s Day there’s some discussion of how Jake is going to be ‘really good’. It goes something like: clean up after yourself; don’t give your mother a hard time; do as your told; be sweet; etc. And every Mother’s Day I wonder: why isn’t every day Mother’s Day? Shouldn’t you do those things all the time?
On Thanksgiving every year I wonder something similar. Shouldn’t we be thankful every day for the multitude of blessings in our lives? Why must it take a holiday to get us to stop and list the things in our lives for which we are grateful? And yet, we don’t. Writing about my life helps me to pause and consider my good fortune but it’s still not exactly an organic task.
Of all of the challenges of parenting, by far the most difficult for me is helping Jake to appreciate what he has. It doesn’t help that we live in a very affluent area and that everyone around us seems to have ‘more’. We don’t watch commercials on television (thank you DVR) or listen to commercial radio but the culture of wanting is insipid and creeps into our lives anyway. On some level, I think it’s human nature, and not entirely a bad thing (when it’s used as a motivator to reach higher). And how can I teach my kids not to be so ‘wanty’ if I’m suffering from a case of the wants myself? It’s like pushing the proverbial rock up the proverbial hill.
So even though I wish everyday was Thanksgiving, it’s not. And it certainly is a lovely thing to celebrate—what we do have to give thanks for. And it’s so very easy to do when surrounded by family and friends and such great abundance.
Maybe this year every day will be Thanksgiving. But probably not. In the meantime I’ll offer up my thanks for: children’s imaginations; color; sunshine; the perfect pair of boots; dog kisses and family resemblance.
There’s a conversation a parent has with an adolescent. I know because it was had with me and I’ve now had it with The Older Boy. In a moment of sheer (pre-)teenage angst one looks around and thinks he/she sees everyone else having an easier time. Remember? Everyone else seemed to have more friends? This conversation is the one about how you’ll be lucky in life if you have two or three real friends—that anyone who appears to have more is just collecting acquaintances.
Recently while imparting this motherly wisdom it occurred to me (and not for the first time) how truly lucky I am in this regard.
I’m often caught in amazement in the wondrous women in my life. Mothers, friends, sisters, daughters, earners, homemakers, creative, talented, thoughtful women. And while I know that I’m blessed with them and thankful for the knowledge that I’m deserving of their friendship there’s still a moment occasionally when I can’t believe my good fortune.
I have friends who will bring me food when I’m sick. I have friends who will bring me food when I’m not sick. Friends who drive long distances to see my children. Friends who partake in my family gatherings. Friends who inspire my senses. Friends who teach me things. Friends who can be called at all hours. Friends who tell me the truth. Friends who feed the cat. Friends who know my secrets. Friends who share their secrets. Friends who have been there for absolutely ever. New friends who only know me as a mother. Friends who ask for difficult favors. Friends who surprise me and friends who make me laugh.
For all the parts of one’s self that get side-tracked or altogether fall by the wayside when one becomes a mother, I have never ever not been fulfilled by the women in my life. And so in the spirit of this month of giving thanks I thank you, the women in my life for what you give to me every day.